• synonyms


noun Irish English.
  1. usury.
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Origin of gombeen

1860–65; < Irish gaimbín interest, especially exorbitant interest, literally, bit, small piece, diminutive of gamba lump, hunk
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for gombeen

Historical Examples of gombeen

  • There are no “Gombeen men” here, he says, and no usurious shopkeepers.

    Ireland Under Coercion (2nd ed.) (2 of 2) (1888)

    William Henry Hurlbert

  • They vary in wealth and position from the humblest 'gombeen man' to the millionaire banker.

  • The "Gombeen" man is alike trader, publican, and money-lender, and he is the backbone of official Nationalist influence.

  • Gombeen man; a usurer who lends money to small farmers and others of like means, at ruinous interest.

  • At Burtonport we found the “Gombeen man,” of Dungloe, represented by a very large “store.”